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Thread: Is Skype Spyware ?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Beans
    10

    Is Skype Spyware ?

    Open Skype without login.
    Open terminal an enter this command to get PID's:
    Code:
    ps aux | grep skype

    You should get something like :
    Code:
    momo     30234  0.0  0.0   4024   584 ?        S    19:03   0:00 /bin/sh /usr/bin/skype
    momo     30235  4.1  0.9  87708 39120 ?        Rl   19:03   0:25 /usr/bin/skype.real
    momo     30554  0.0  0.0   7540   912 pts/0    R+   19:14   0:00 grep skype
    Get PID from skype.real ( here 30235 )

    Now let's use some system calls and signals application over skype ( strace) :
    Code:
    strace -f -p30235 &>skype.log &
    Now log into your skype account.

    After login into skype launch this command in terminal:
    Code:
    grep bookmarks skype.log
    This shows us the result of system calls and signals application of skype :
    Code:
    [pid 30848] stat64("/home/momo/.mozilla/firefox/kpu1qtt3.default/bookmarks.html", {st_mode=S_IFREG|0644, st_size=28240, ...}) = 0
    [pid 30848] stat64("/home/momo/.mozilla/firefox/kpu1qtt3.default/bookmarkbackups/bookmarks-2009-05-06.json", {st_mode=S_IFREG|0600, st_size=8807, ...}) = 0
    [pid 30848] stat64("/home/momo/.mozilla/firefox/kpu1qtt3.default/bookmarkbackups/bookmarks-2009-04-30.json", {st_mode=S_IFREG|0600, st_size=6286, ...}) = 0
    [pid 30848] stat64("/home/momo/.mozilla/firefox/kpu1qtt3.default/bookmarkbackups/bookmarks-2009-05-05.json", {st_mode=S_IFREG|0600, st_size=6651, ...}) = 0
    [pid 30848] stat64("/home/momo/.mozilla/firefox/kpu1qtt3.default/bookmarkbackups/bookmarks-2009-04-29.json", {st_mode=S_IFREG|0600, st_size=6286, ...}) = 0
    [pid 30848] stat64("/home/momo/.mozilla/firefox/kpu1qtt3.default/bookmarkbackups/bookmarks-2009-05-07.json", {st_mode=S_IFREG|0600, st_size=8807, ...}) = 0
    So why a chat and VOIP software looks for my bookmarks ???
    Last edited by momo971; May 7th, 2009 at 10:06 PM.

  2. #2

    Re: Is Skype Spyware ?

    I apologize, but perhaps you could summarize for the illiterate? (Although I guess they probably don't come to this forum that often ^.^; )
    3 apps that make Ubuntu more like a Mac
    How to make Ubuntu look and feel like Mac OS X

    Tarutaru icon (c) 2001-2004 SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD. All Rights Reserved.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Beans
    95
    Distro
    Kubuntu

    Re: Is Skype Spyware ?

    Nice work, momo. Guess we shouldn't be very surprised.

    I've never really used Skype so I'm not sure how it works but I wonder if you could sniff traffic from Skype to see if it's sending your bookmarks data anywhere with ngrep or similar. I'm betting it does send that info out.


    Murrquan, momo basically used a program (strace) to get a little more info on what Skype is doing in the background. With it, momo could see what files Skype was accessing on their system.

    Here's a quick description of strace from it's man page for you:

    It intercepts and records the system calls which are called by a process and the signals which are received by a process. The name of each system call, its arguments and its return value are printed on standard error or to the file specified with the -o option.

    Check out the man page (man strace at the command line) on your system, visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strace, or check Google to find out more on strace.


    Mike

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    UK
    Beans
    1,098

    Re: Is Skype Spyware ?

    Quote Originally Posted by momo971 View Post

    So why a chat and VOIP software looks for my bookmarks ???
    Maybe there is an answer here:

    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=548898
    Brian.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Beans
    38
    Distro
    Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty Jackalope

    Re: Is Skype Spyware ?

    I'm curious as to whether or not Skype does this in Windows and Mac OS X as well.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Belgium
    Beans
    22
    Distro
    Ubuntu

    Re: Is Skype Spyware ?

    if skype manages to spy upon a linux system then be sure that it will on a windows system

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